Administrators from the Grand Valley and Pymatuning Valley School districts are fine-tuning their back-to-school plans as classes are scheduled to begin in less than three weeks.

Leaders from both districts are emphasizing the possibility that things may change quickly and plans will be fluid.

Students in the Grand Valley Local Schools are scheduled to begin classes on Aug. 25 with kindergarten to fifth grade students having in-person classes while the older students will be in school two days a week to start the school year, said superintendent William Nye.

"I think it is critical," Nye said of the younger students having in-person classes because of the challenges of online learning for younger children.

Nye said the students also remain in the same room all day and can be socially distanced easier than students moving from class to class at the higher grade levels.

He said the older students will have two days in class, two days online and a the fifth day for teachers to assist students on the lessons taught through the Internet.

Nye said parents looking to enroll their students in the online curriculum should go to the district website and follow a link to the registration process.

“We just started opening up our online registration last Friday,” Nye said.

He said about 50 of the 1,050 students in the district have chosen the online option. He said parents should sign up by Friday.

Nye said parents can call the school if the they are not able to complete the process online. He also said the plan is “day to day” and subject to change due to the whims of the coronavirus pandemic.

Pymatuning Valley Local Schools Superintendent Chris Edison said all students are scheduled to return to class on Aug. 24.

“We have our new student registration that will be happening Aug. 10 and 11, he said.

Edison said 80 to 85 percent of the 1,050 students families have responded to a survey. He said that is about 500 families since many have more than one child.

“Out of the 500 responses we have had a quarter of them (more than 200) are going to online,” Edison said.

“I thought it would be a little less than that,” Edison said.

He said the surveys were completed as coronavirus cases in the state were steadily rising.

Detailed plans are posted on the GV and PV district websites.

Masks for all staff and for students on all school buses are mandatory at both districts. GV is mandating masks for fourth grade and up and recommending masks for the younger students. PV is mandating masks for fifth grade and up.

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